College football conference power rankings


Georgia’s stock is up. Oklahoma’s and Texas’ is down.

But that was just some of the shifting among the college football conference powerhouses.

Here’s a look at the hierarchy among the three Power 5 conferences that were in action this past week, along with our initial Group of 5 rankings:

Jump to a conference:
SEC | Big 12 | ACC | G5

SEC

Raise your hand if you were wrong about Georgia.

This writer was, and he wasn’t alone after a lackluster season-opening win against Arkansas. Stetson Bennett IV sounded more like a golfer than a starting quarterback, and Todd Monken’s new-look offense looked like more of the same old, same old.

But after what we saw from Georgia Saturday against Auburn — dominating in all phases, from start to finish — it’s time to reassess. Bennett appears to be a more-than-competent option at quarterback for Georgia, and Monken called a solid game, mixing run and pass.

The win sets the stage for what could be a heavyweight battle in the East as both Georgia and Florida appear to be playoff contenders.

Speaking of reassessing things, maybe we should take a second look at LSU after a disappointing season-opening loss to Mississippi State. The defense and quarterback Myles Brennan both stepped up in a dominant win at Vanderbilt.

If LSU can beat Missouri next Saturday, it will head into a road game against Florida the following weekend with the chance to reset expectations. — Alex Scarborough

1. Alabama
2. Florida
3. Georgia
4. LSU
5. Auburn
6. Tennessee
7. Mississippi State
8. Texas A&M
9. Ole Miss
10. Kentucky
11. Arkansas
12. South Carolina
13. Vanderbilt
14. Missouri

Big 12

Well hello, wide-open Big 12. It looks a lot different than it usually does. After losses Saturday for each, neither Oklahoma nor Texas is in the top three. Those spots are reserved for the only teams with unblemished league records: Oklahoma State, Iowa State and Kansas State.

The Cowboys are the only team in the league with a perfect overall record (3-0), and they’ve done it mostly without starting quarterback Spencer Sanders, who was injured early in the Pokes’ season debut. TCU’s win over Texas shows the Horned Frogs could be a factor down the road, and West Virginia’s win over Baylor gives Neal Brown’s team reason for optimism, too.

As for the Red River rivals, next weekend’s matchup might not be an elimination game, but the losing team will certainly be in a tough spot in the Big 12 pecking order with six games remaining. — Sam Khan Jr.

1. Oklahoma State
2. Iowa State
3. Kansas State
4. TCU
5. Texas
6. Oklahoma
7. West Virginia
8. Baylor
9. Texas Tech
10. Kansas

ACC

The ACC is set for a top-10 matchup between Miami and Clemson — and a third appearance for the Hurricanes on College GameDay.

The Tigers will go in as a heavy favorite, but their 41-23 win against Virginia might have provided a glimpse into a few areas where Miami can potentially take advantage. First, Clemson had a difficult time slowing down Virginia quarterback Brennan Armstrong from making plays with his legs. If Armstrong was able scramble around and make some plays, what will Miami quarterback D’Eriq King be able to do? Secondly, Trevor Lawrence struggled against the blitz. If anything, Miami has to feel it can stay competitive in the game — unlike the past two times the two teams played.

As for the rest of the league, Virginia Tech once again won a game despite missing 20-plus players and defensive coordinator Justin Hamilton. North Carolina played yet another game that went down to the wire and beat Boston College, and Pitt held true to form and lost to NC State as a double-digit favorite. — Andrea Adelson

1. Clemson
2. Notre Dame
3. Miami
4. Virginia Tech
5. North Carolina
6. NC State
7. Pitt
8. Boston College
9. Virginia
10. Louisville
11. Wake Forest
12. Syracuse
13. Georgia Tech
14. Florida State
15. Duke

Group of 5/Independents

Just a few weeks ago, our friends at ESPN Stats & Information calculated that UCF would be favored in games against in-state Power 5 teams Florida, Florida State and Miami. Those odds have to look a little different after the Knights improbably lost to Tulsa — for a second straight year. UCF had its 21-game home winning streak broken and its slim, outside shot at making the College Football Playoff smashed.

The one glaring issue in UCF’s first two wins really hurt it badly: penalties. Against Tulsa, UCF had 18 for 124 yards. Simply unacceptable. The loss puts Cincinnati in front among Group of 5 teams. The Bearcats beat South Florida 28-7, though that was not a perfect performance, either.

The team to watch in the American might just be SMU, which moved to 4-0 after a win over Memphis. Shane Buechele threw for 474 yards in the win. Here are the top 10 teams among the Group of 5. And let’s not forget about BYU. — Adelson

1. Cincinnati
2. BYU
3. SMU
4. UCF
5. Louisiana
6. Memphis
7. Marshall
8. Coastal Carolina
9. Army
10. Air Force



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